Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby ExCon90 » Tue May 26, 2015 3:48 pm

There used to be a rule in the AAR standard rules that "any object waved violently by any person standing on or near the tracks is a signal to stop," and I think most railroads incorporated it in their own rulebooks. However, that doesn't alter the fact that the film crew was denied permission to film and ignored the denial. They had no business to be there, period. As to flares, anyone placing the flares would need to know how far away to place them, and anyone having enough knowledge for that would know better than to participate in such dangerous foolishness in the first place, as did the very sensible individual who refused to go along with it.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby mmi16 » Tue Jun 02, 2015 12:14 pm

patcat88 wrote:The film crew also could've called CSX and lied that a vehicle was stuck on the tracks on private property, but would CSX automatically call the cops to goto the scene if they got that phone call and then the film crew will get locked up by the local police?

The emergency contact number for CSX 800-232-0144 is answered by CSX's Police Service Center, who will notify the local police of the happening concurrent with notifying the Train Dispatcher for the territory involved for any suspected interference of safe operation of trains.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby Gadfly » Sat Jul 04, 2015 6:31 pm

ExCon90 wrote:There used to be a rule in the AAR standard rules that "any object waved violently by any person standing on or near the tracks is a signal to stop," and I think most railroads incorporated it in their own rulebooks. However, that doesn't alter the fact that the film crew was denied permission to film and ignored the denial. They had no business to be there, period. As to flares, anyone placing the flares would need to know how far away to place them, and anyone having enough knowledge for that would know better than to participate in such dangerous foolishness in the first place, as did the very sensible individual who refused to go along with it.


Its called a "Washout Signal", and, yes, stopping is required. However, once the train stopped on signal or in response to fusees/flares and it was determined that the stop was caused by unauthorized trespassers, the culprits would have been charged with said trespass and unauthorized interference with trains. These could also involved FEDERAL charges as well. You do not interfere with train operations! Period! This goes back to the era of train robberies, the old West, and the Pinkerton detectives who were the basis of railroad dicks today. It would have been a good thing if they HAD stopped the train on that fatal night as lives would have been saved because of it. But the culprits who tampered with the train with unauthorized fusees would have wished they hadn't when CSX learned of it.

There's no excuse for such recklessness on the parts of fools who will not take trains seriously. They are not toys for our pleasure! :(

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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby CLamb » Mon Dec 07, 2015 2:36 pm

A petition has been set up to object to Mr. Miller's petition for early release from prison. https://www.change.org/p/object-to-randall-miller-s-motion-for-early-release-from-prison
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby BandA » Fri Feb 12, 2016 12:58 am

From the NTSB report
...In addition, statutory language prohibits the admission into evidence or use of any part of an NTSB report related to an accident in a civil action for damages resulting from a matter mentioned in the report. 49 United States Code, Section 1154(b)
So it can be used in a criminal trial, but for the lawsuit if you tell the truth to the NTSB you can lie in court and get away with it. Amazing.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby ExCon90 » Fri Feb 12, 2016 3:45 pm

The reason that's in there is that it's the only way people are going to tell all they know to the NTSB, and if people don't tell all they know the NTSB may never get to the root cause of the accident, which is what they're charged with doing. Someone who knows he may be hauled into court because of his testimony is going to answer yes-or-no questions with yes or no and clam up beyond that--and that's not the way to get the facts. Attorneys in civil cases are interested in fixing blame--the NTSB is charged with fixing problems.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Tue Jul 18, 2017 6:46 am

CBS Radio News reported during the 6A CT hour today that the victims of this incident - clearly a case of trespass - have been awarded $4M.

Chessie of course - and in this instance rightly - plans to appeal this award.

Addendum: the trade media has reported on this development:

http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/m ... es-1021896

Fair Use:

A railroad owner must pay $3.9 million to the family of a movie worker killed on a Georgia railroad trestle in 2014, a jury decided Monday in civil verdict that found the company shared in the blame for the deadly freight train collision even though the film crew was trespassing.

The parents of Sarah Jones sued CSX Transportation in Chatham County State Court, saying the railroad shared in the blame for their daughter's death. The 27-year-old camera assistant died in the crash on Feb. 20, 2014, during the first day of shooting Midnight Rider, an ill-fated movie about Gregg Allman of The Allman Brothers Band


Well, so the jury reasons, if Chessie has $89M in her purse to pay to a CEO whose life expectancy days may be numbered, she likely has enough loose change to take care of the victim's family.

Whoever said that life is fair? Surely the "Low-Bud Indie" production company's insurance (shall we assume they had it and not just some "corner to be cut") had long since been "blown".
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby Backshophoss » Tue Jul 18, 2017 5:40 pm

You had to figure that CSX would appeal that jury award,after proving that they would not allow the "production company" access
twice!! The 2 train's crews that passed thru earlier that day saw "nothing" that would have required notification of the DS that something was
about to happen at that location.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby mmi16 » Tue Jul 18, 2017 8:25 pm

If anyone, beyond the film company is responsible, it is Rayonier. They had a representative on site who let the film company into the area. If the film company lied to the Rayonier representative about having permission to occupy CSX property (and I am sure the question got asked - or the Rayonier rep should be fired forth with for dereliction of duty), then that puts Rayonier & CSX in the clear with CSX having declined permission to the film company two times in writing. If the film company did not lie then Rayonier becomes the responsible party for allowing the film company to occupy other than Rayonier property.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby deathtopumpkins » Wed Jul 19, 2017 8:06 am

Backshophoss wrote:The 2 train's crews that passed thru earlier that day saw "nothing" that would have required notification of the DS that something was
about to happen at that location.


Are you sure? The above linked article says that CSX policy is for train crews to radio the dispatcher if they encounter anyone trespassing in the ROW. I'm sure this rule is largely ignored, but if the train crews should have radioed about the crew trespassing and didn't, that may constitute some liability.

(IANAL)

For the record - I think the film crew was 100% at fault here and CSX should not be held responsible for anything.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby Gilbert B Norman » Wed Jul 19, 2017 8:29 am

Mr. Pumpkins et al, it matters not who is at fault, it matters who has the deep pockets. Juries see a family, whose daughter had the hapless task working as a Production Assistant for some low-bud Indie film producer, in shock and grief. The Plaintiffs got a Jury trial, the Defendants would have likely faired better with a Bench.

A more recent and visible case with same parameters is that of Venus Williams. She has been deemed not at fault in an auto collision that resulted in a fatality. But you can be mighty sure there will be an "out of court settlement of an undisclosed amount with neither party admitting to fault or wrongdoing".
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby Lincoln78 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 6:19 pm

I understand that part of the logic for CSX's high percentage of responsibility was the courts concern over their failure to follow their policy to notify dispatch of trespassers.

I wonder if CSX will change that from a command to a recommendation. Would the trespassers have moved as quickly if the train was only going 30? If CSX had called law enforcement would the local government have liability?

Tragic situation. CSX was about as right as they could have been and their stockholders and customers do not deserve this financial hit.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby mmi16 » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:50 pm

deathtopumpkins wrote:
Backshophoss wrote:The 2 train's crews that passed thru earlier that day saw "nothing" that would have required notification of the DS that something was
about to happen at that location.


Are you sure? The above linked article says that CSX policy is for train crews to radio the dispatcher if they encounter anyone trespassing in the ROW. I'm sure this rule is largely ignored, but if the train crews should have radioed about the crew trespassing and didn't, that may constitute some liability.

(IANAL)

For the record - I think the film crew was 100% at fault here and CSX should not be held responsible for anything.


In the area of the incident the CSX right of way runs through the middle of a Rayonier tree farm. Personnel on Rayonier property are not considered trespassers on CSX property - as they are not on CSX property. There is no 'painted line' to demark the property boundaries, rule of thumb - if there aren't at the edge of the ballast profile they are on Rayonier property.
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby Backshophoss » Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:18 am

That's the given that the CSX ROW is surrounded by the Rayonier property,the train crews saw nothing that could affect a train passing thru.
Now if a tree cutting crew was working close to the ROW,that might get reported to the DS. and to the next train's crew to watch out for
that tree cutting crew and/or a fallen tree or 2 across the track.
All the train crew saw was a film crew possibly filming a "PR" film for Rayonier. :wink:
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Re: Film crew struck by CSX train in Wayne County, Ga.

Postby Gadfly » Thu Jul 20, 2017 4:32 pm

Backshophoss wrote:That's the given that the CSX ROW is surrounded by the Rayonier property,the train crews saw nothing that could affect a train passing thru.
Now if a tree cutting crew was working close to the ROW,that might get reported to the DS. and to the next train's crew to watch out for
that tree cutting crew and/or a fallen tree or 2 across the track.
All the train crew saw was a film crew possibly filming a "PR" film for Rayonier. :wink:


And HOW could have CSX crews been able to make a distinction? They aren't mind readers :( IMHO, the fault clearly lies with the film crew who violated their own safety rules (If any) by being there in the first place. I seem to recall that these people REQUESTED permission to occupy CSX' trackage AND WERE SPECIFICALLY DENIED SAME!. The film crew disobeyed. And yet despite this, CSX was WRONGLY adjudged because of an immoral and BULL**** "deep pockets" syndrome that has permeated our justice system. :( :( I cannot express adequately my contempt for the judges, juries, courts that perpetrated this CRAP!! :(

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